Mega-canvas by Lekim Ibragimov that has already bewitched the most part of Europe, weighs 22 tons, its area is 528 square meters, 8 meters high and 66 meters long. Installation of the “Angels” takes four days, and for fastening of the picture is needed two and a half kilometers of steel cables.
ВVery impressive dimension of this artistic rarity is not the main advantage of the canvas. Each of the thousand paintings, of which the art object consists, represents a separate story composition written in beautiful calligraphy.
To the workshop of Lekim Ibragimov I was led by the story of the project “1,000 Angels and One Painting” and, of course, to ask the main question, when the art object will appear full-length at home, in Uzbekistan?
But about all in order...
Why are the eyes of all angels closed?
“When the eyes are open, we understand at once, kind people, or angry, thoughtful or sad, happy or tired. My “Angels” - a mystery, everyone can find his/her guardian angel, and identifying it with himself, the person takes the answers to the question - what is he...”
What did you inspired to create the plot that clearly have something common with ancient mythology?
“The oriental tales inspired Montesquieu, Wieland, Hauff, Tennyson, Dickens, Pushkin. Fanciful pattern of plots, depth and subtle poetry of these stories were timeless: in our anthropogenic time they attract and inspire artists. And the project “1,000 Angels and One Painting” is just among the works of art with spicy aroma of “1,000 Arabian Nights.” I would say more, in my canvas echoes the plots and scriptural parables, and the Eastern tales. I created the canvas on the very beginning that is from the origins of the roots. It is turned interesting.”
What, in your opinion, is bearing the canvas, and how do people perceive it?
“Angels” are exhibited various parts of the world with the only purpose - to share hope and joy with people. The grand display of the canvas took place in Prague. A number of shows in other cities are getting prepared worldwide.”
Here is the main question: when could we see the canvas full-length in Tashkent?
“You’re right, the canvas has not been exhibited in Uzbekistan yet, it is only the fragment was assembled and demonstrated at the Academy of Arts. We were unable to show the canvas in full length. The whole point is in the size of the project, it was not decided where the whole exposition could be placed. We hope that it will be possible to implement our plan this year – to show the canvas at the home country.”
We know that your works win worldwide accolades, tell us about your own style, how did you find it?
“I wrote about it that way: “The book-message I was looking for many years. Fell, suffered, stood up. One day I awoke: the book inside me.” All artists have their own school, their path. This work is not of a day, or an hour. I was in search for many years. I had studied national trends, and managed to find my direction, and art critics began to notice and observe my own style. I did not want to repeat or copy other artists, I just needed to create my school, and I did. Any artist has his secret, for one it is enough to copy someone’s style, and someone seeks for his own! I managed to combine oil painting and calligraphy with graphics.”
How did you work on the art object “1,000 Angels and One Painting?”
“I worked in three hangars for 10 years until saw the light. I chose out special priming for the project, which absorbs the paint. I do not say how I prepare it, but I would say that I used a wonderful ingredient that is widely used by artists in Russia - the glue from the fish bubbles. For creating one canvas from thousands of pictures, we have made hundreds of thousands of photos, when assembling the canvas the parts did not separate, and just came together, we calculated and tested on the ground. When the canvas was finished, different fragments were posted under the snow and rain, leave for a long time under water, and in cold room. Then we watched whether the work had changes, or distortions. But, everything was fine.”
In your creativity dominate mostly glowing, soft and warm colors, combined with rich, cool tints that give the works a composite accent. How did you select the palette to the “Angels?”
“Terracotta color prevails in the canvas, the color of the primordial eastern. There are also turquoise and white colors. These colors are very soft, and at the same time, they are pretty bright when you see the canvas as a whole.”
Your work is intended to join the list of the Guinness Records Book, what was the answer to your application?
“We have difficulties at that. The fact that they can not determine which category could be ranked our art object. As soon as the category will be determined the “1,000 Angels” will take its place in the record book, although for me it does not matter. The main thing is the winning of hearts of the peoples.”
Lekim Ibragimov is a world famous artist. Professor, academician of the Academy of Arts of Uzbekistan, honorary member of the Russian Academy of Arts, People’s Artist of Uzbekistan.
In lyrical and poetic works of the Uzbek artist are reflected the mystic and wisdom of the East.
Published in Uzbekistan Today (Feb, 7, 2013)